Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Crafts at Gymnastics Camp - Day 3 - Recycled Jar Lanterns

These beautiful recycled glass lanterns came from an idea posted at Gingerbread snowflake.

We gathered pickle, spaghetti sauce, salsa, jelly, and other jars. 

I wrapped the wire hangers ahead of time.  Each hanger is strung with 2 or 3 beads.

The children painted just the sides with a mix of Mod Podge and food coloring.  I mixed up only blue, green, and bluegreen.  After painting, they dabbed with their brushes to give some texture. (Note: at home I painted the whole outside of the jar twice, and wired the hangers after they were completely dry)
Love the tongue-stickin' out concentration
They are cloudy while wet.

Then they dry to a clear, shiny color.

These are mostly dry.

One older girl carefully dabbed on polka dots - I like it!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Crafts at Gymnastics Camp - Day 2 - Tie Dye

How have I become the Tie Dye Queen?  I did not set out to be the one who always has wrinkled purple fingers ...

Day 2 each child brought in a white shirt, and we tie-dyed. We used rubber bands and marbles, tied straight horizontal lines, sunbursts, and circles.  (Note for the future:  Some of the under-6 crowd have no idea how to stretch a rubber band around something.  Now I remember - my daughter could not do ponytails herself until she was about 7 years old.  If not for the 3 teenage helpers with this group, we would have taken all day.)

The dying table.  When I tie-dyed with 7 children, we did some multi-color shirts.  With almost 30, we dunked each shirt in 1 color only.  I've used Rit, Dylon, and Tulip fabric dyes.  I think we like Tulip best.  The colors are bright and seem to fade less.  Their Turquoise was a favorite.

It was also water day.  That's good planning.

This is the shirt that nearly ran us out of marbles.  We had to rinse, wring, and undo several shirts so that Groups 3 and 4 could put their shirts together. (See my red face?  We had some record June temps last week.  It was hot, hot hot! )
 We put the shirts under the solar clothes dryer.

I have tie-dyed twice this year with smaller groups.  It is a lot of work to do this with big groups.  The rinsing and wringing seem unending!  My fingers are still cramping.  I think, "No way! Not again!"  And then parents start telling me how this was their child's favorite craft, and I know I'll do it again. 

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Crafts at Gymnastics Camp - Day 1 - Refrigerator Magnets

Last week I "did crafts" 3 days at Gymnastics Camp. Almost 30 girls and boys, age 4-17 ran, played, jumped, danced, flipped, and  did a few crafts.

It's fun to create refrigerator magnets made with flat-back glass marbles (I bought these at JoAnn's floral section), scrapbook paper, Mod Podge, and magnets.

I've seen these several places, including  E-How and DailyDwelling.

They are so simple and quick, and the designs are only limited to what you can find on a piece of paper.  I cut some designs from my scrapbook stash, and printed out a few stylized gymnastics clip art pictures.

The children chose paper squares, brushed the backs of the glass marbles with Mod Podge, and smushed the marbles onto the face of the paper.  When you first paint on the Mod Podge, it appears cloudy, but soon it dries crystal clear.

While the initial coat dried, the children ran off to play one game of 4-Square.  Then back they came to trim edges and "glue" on magnets using Mod Podge as the glue. All done!  Pick them up on your way home!

 A few hints and observations:

- Since we were marking these on the back before they were totally dry, we had some bleed-through of Sharpie pen on some magnets

- Buy the heavy-duty magnets - they are so much stronger.  KEEP THE MAGNETS SEPARATED DURING THE DRYING PHASE!  These magnets are strong enough to pull together, and you come back to find a magnet has slid right off one marble onto its neighbor.

- 5-year-olds need a lot of help trimming

- When I did this at home, I took the time to seal the back with Mod Podge also, but didn't while working in 30-minute classes.  

More Gymnastics Camp crafts soon!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Summer Art, and Have You Seen Lydia?

Sm'Arties are taking summer break, but arts and crafts are still happening around here, and I plan to post a few projects over the summer just for fun. 

When Earthgirl gets together with friends, they often draw and paint.   But we also sometimes do art projects similar to the ones we do in Sm'Arties class.

 One of her 8 bffs was over yesterday.  The girls got on Art Projects for Kids, and picked out this project to do.

The had fun tracing and Sharpie-ing.  (Don't you think "Sharpie-ing" should be a word?)

You can see in the pictures that the girls have decorated their arms and faces.  You cannot see the vines and flwers running down their legs, but believe me, they were there.   We use watercolor pencils for drawing on skin.  I used to have some facepaint sticks, but what a mess!  Now we just dampen the tip of a watercolor pencil and start drawing.  Of course, this is very temporary paint, but that's a good thing!  

When Earthgirl turned 7, we held a "Fairy Party."  A friend and I decorated 12 little fairy faces.  If only we had known about watercolor pencils then.

Can you believe this is the same little friend?  They are all growing up so fast!

The girls wanted to paint my arm, too.  I had no objection. I sat in a rocking chair with my book and let them at it!  My arm had an eye, two hearts, some Dalmation spots, and a flower.  When they were done, I took a look at myself and realized that I didn't look like I had facepaint decor on my arm - I looked like I was tatooed!